It has been hard to not get overly emotional about what British Petroleum has done to the Gulf of Mexico and the marine life and animals that make up those fragile eco-systems. Something that I expected to be mitigated by an outcry for sanity and clean energy policies, and stricter observance to the regulations that already exist. My hopes have sadly gone unanswered.
Instead the right has shamelessly ramped up calls for more drilling, more tax breaks and subsidies for fossil fuel companies and less regulation. This, even even though they are the most profitable corporations in the history of modern capitalism. Some have even wanted to shield BP from paying the full costs of the clean-up.
The extent of BP's criminality is not yet known but, near as I can tell, by direct comparison they make the Mafia look like pikers. They cut corners on safety and design, and their negligence seems to have been the cause of the catastrophe in the first place. Now they're trying to buy up scientists and by extension their silence on Gulf coast studies - The Press-Register obtained a copy of a contract offered to scientists by BP. It prohibits the scientists from publishing their research, sharing it with other scientists or speaking about the data that they collect for at least the next three years.
Listen to Rachel's report on how they're trying to accomplish this:
The really sad thing about this post is that it comes at a time when there should be a bit of relief that they got that damned well capped! They found a way to close the lid on that oil gushing volcano and they're close (by the only accounts available to one and all) to having those relief wells dug. We don't know if it'll hold as there are concerns about the wellbore's integrity and besides, this would just mark the end of the first part of the disaster anyhow.
The millions of gallons of oil and dispersants in the Gulf of Mexico waters, the toll they take on the Gulf region, and the length of time it takes for the region to recover is what follows and will take far more than three months to wrap up. The stories to keep your eye on are the ones about BP's continuing cover-up of the truth. Their continuous maneuvering to try and lessen the financial costs of their criminality and the politicians who are in their thrall and will work on their behalf and not for their constituents.
Interview With Environmental Artist Franke James (part the 2nd) - Here's the second part of my freewheeling interview with environmental artist and activist Franke James. We discuss the pro-active philosophy that guides...